March 25, 2014

"Obama Trolls Tea Party With Bumper Sticker"/"Scalia's Past Haunts Him On Birth Control."

2 teasers from the top of the front page at Talking Points Memo:



Both go to articles written by Sahil Kapur, whose name I first noticed in connection with the Scalia piece yesterday. I didn't blog about that because the legal stupidity of it annoyed me but also bored me too much to explain. I happened to see Kapur's name again this morning as I clicked on a link at Drudge that read "LIMBAUGH RIPS MEDIA": 'PIG IGNORANT'..." Limbaugh excoriates the media for not understanding that self-employed persons — such as Matt Drudge — have to pay quarterly installments on their taxes, so Drudge was not lying when he said he was already paying the penalty for declining to buy health insurance.
The individual mandate went into effect Jan. 1 of this year, and most people paying their taxes right now are paying taxes for 2013. 'Dude, there's no penalty until next yr,' Sahil Kapur of the left-wing Talking Points Memo tweeted.  Kapur's colleague at TPM Dylan Scott wrote a full story with a headline alleging Drudge was 'probably lying.' 'Americans don't pay a penalty for not having health insurance until they file their 2014 taxes -- in 2015,' Scott wrote.
Now I see Kapur's name on that piece about the bumper sticker, which, at the inside page, is headlined "Obama Co-Opts Tea Party Slogan For Obamacare Bumper Sticker." We talked about that bumper sticker last night. My favorite comment on my post is from Carl Pham, who says:
Love it. An effeminate l'il toothless snake, slim 'n' trim from his regular yoga class, sipping chai latte and curling up with his iPad to do a little Facebooking on the back of a lime-green Prius. I'm guessing the same design team that came up with Pajama Boy?
I also like Dr. Weevil:
Unlike the Gadsden flag snake, this one doesn't seem to be a rattlesnake. The point of the original flag is that the snake-warrior doesn't strike first, doesn't go in search of people to bite, but if you step on him, he will bite back and hurt you worse than you hurt him. The Obamacare snake just bites people.
Yeah, and also, if you tread on a stethoscope, it doesn't attack you. You can quite successfully survive stomping all over a stethoscope. And why would they want to portray that stethoscope as being like a rattlesnake? The message seems to be that Obamacare is threatening you and can kill you.

Anyway, I have no problem with TPM noting that Obama has appropriated the old Gadsden flag, which has of late been strongly associated with the Tea Party. And it's not Kapur who called Obama a troll. I just found all that interesting and was surprised to see Kapur's name again.

It's that Scalia piece that is so irritating. Kapur is not responsible for the photo of Scalia coming out of the darkness with his hands in the "Boo!" position under the word "Haunts." But he is responsible for writing such a nitwit explanation of a legal problem. Scalia wrote the majority opinion in the case that most clearly explains what the Free Exercise Clause means — which is that there's no constitutional right to exemptions from neutral, generally applicable laws. The case that's currently before the Supreme Court (Hobby Lobby) is based on the statute — the Religious Freedom Restoration Act — that Congress passed after the Court decided that Free Exercise case, so now there is a statutory right to exemptions. There's nothing haunting about this. There's the Constitution, which needed interpretation, and there are statutes, which can extend more rights than the Constitution provides. These are different texts and they require independent interpretation.

It's dumb (or disingenuous) to portray Scalia as somehow troubled by needing to apply a statute that requires courts to protect religion more than the Constitution requires. In fact, if anything, I could see him being especially deferential to Congress's choice to trump a judicial opinion with a clearly stated statutory entitlement. The problem to be argued before the Court today is about 2 statutes and the way they interact. It's Congress, not Scalia, that is "haunted" by the past. Congress enacted the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, a clear text, and it had the power to put text in the Affordable Care Act that would exclude the application of the RFRA. It didn't!

I've explained this before, by the way, back in November when the Supreme Court granted cert. in the Hobby Lobby case:
This is about statutes and the politicos who produce them, not the judges who stand back and let them trip all over themselves pandering to everyone. If the Congress that passed the Affordable Care Act had wanted to exempt it from the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, it could have done so explicitly. It did not. Why should the Court cut back Congress's absurdly broad RFRA to help it out with what it failed to bother to do with the ACA?

142 comments:

Maryland Geezer said...

Taranto has a nice piece on Scalia posted Monday.

richlb said...

This may be a dumb question, as a good deal of the people who are on this blog are law-oriented and probably know this, but why is Sebelius listed first on the Hobby Lobby case and second on the Conestoga case? Is the government the plaintiff in one and defendant in the other?

David said...

It's the lefty view of judicial action. All that counts is getting the result we want. Legal principles are irrelevant. Nothing new here, just a less sophisticated application of the approach.

Ann Althouse said...

@richlb When the Supreme Court takes a case, the first party listed is the party that sought the Court's review, that is, the loser in the court below.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

The contraception mandate bothers me in a very simple way. It seems like bad citizenship--like a violation of the Don't Be A Dick philosophy--to use the power of the state to compel people to do something they don't want to do absent an extremely important reason. Most ordinary Americans in 2014 would generally agree with the cultural principle that they would not allow someone to make them so something they would prefer not to. My neighbor can't force me to plant roses in my yard because he likes their smell wafting through the neighborhood and no normal person would argue that he should have that power. And yet many people OK with abandoning that principle when it is the government doing the compelling. I don't understand it.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

And that pitiful High School Marketing Students of America attempt at "trolling the Tea Party" bothers me because it sets up the Gadsden flag as some kind of exclusive Tea Party thing ripe for mocking, when it's actually a Real Historical Thing deserving of all Americans' respect. But then again the leftist True Believers generally have no respect for American history, so it's par for the course.

Pogo is Dead said...

"Why should the Court cut back Congress's absurdly broad RFRA to help it out with what it failed to bother to do with the ACA?"

Dread Justice Roberts will find a way to help out.
Again.

MadisonMan said...

It's not just the self-employed who pay quarterly taxes. My retired Dad does too. Anyone with a big tax bite probably should, just to spread out the pain.

This is when DBQ is needed in a thread :)

Meade said...

We elected (twice) the first cool hip president and all we got was this lousy requirement to buy insurance.

CWJ said...

I Have Missplaced My Pants wrote -

"My neighbor can't force me to plant roses in my yard because he likes their smell wafting through the neighborhood and no normal person would argue that he should have that power."

This gave me a chuckle. I suspect that you have had little or no experience with a home owners association.

Curious George said...

"Meade said...
We elected (twice) the first cool hip president and all we got was this lousy requirement to buy insurance."

What do you mean "we", Kemosabe?

Basil said...

"This gave me a chuckle. I suspect that you have had little or no experience with a home owners association."

Not a good analogy. Nobody forced the homeowner to buy into a development with restrictive HOA's.

richard mcenroe said...

CWJ - when the fee-yancy and I moved to Texas, we made a point of moving to a NoHOA area. So if any of my neighbors have suggestions as to what I can do with my property, I can explain that I need that land for my speaker tower and yes, Black Sabbath is forever. (I need that other piece of land for my pistol range.)

We had a fun discussion about this with one of the realtors we talked to over dinner. She brought her husband, who was Don't Tread On Me before it was fashionable.

Now, to be fair, neighbors have an influence on her job because they can affect the perception of the property she represents.

But she was describing all the terrible things neighbors can do using their own property and the husband and I basically responded to each one with "Yes. And...?"

It's a door that swings both ways: leave alone to be let alone. Or pretty soon the guy who tells you what color your mailbox can be is telling you what campaign signs you can put on your lawn in an election year. For the Association.

CWJ said...

Basil,

It was an aside regarding the nature of homeowners associations. Nothing more. I'm sorry I left you with the impression that I was making a serious analogy to the contraception mandate. Cheers.

Pogo is Dead said...

@CWJ

And don't let it happen again!!1!

CWJ said...

Yes sir! No sir! Never again sir!

Unknown said...

I did not originally see the broken coil spring flag as a parody of the Gadsden flag.

oldav8r said...

"If the Congress that passed the Affordable Care Act had wanted to exempt it from the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, it could have done so explicitly."

Had the Congress actually read and debated ACA prior to voting, the might have.

cubanbob said...

Forget it Ann, its TPM. How many of it's readers are even capable of earning enough to be paying quarterly taxes? They couldn't buy a clue with a C-note. There's a reason TPM stands for talking points morons.

cubanbob said...

Unknown said...
I did not originally see the broken coil spring flag as a parody of the Gadsden flag.

3/25/14, 8:44 AM

I thought it was a busted IUD.

Rick Caird said...

We need a like button. I liked Mead's comment of "... all I got was this lousy insurance requirement".

We shouldn't forget that ObamaCare was written in the dead of night by Harry Reid's office, voted on, unread, by the Senate hours later and sent to the House which passed it "as is" so it would not have to go back to the Senate where Scott Brown's vote would have killed it.

Therefore, there was no internal consistency check. There was no opportunity for clarifying amendments. There was no opportunity for anything Harry Reid did not think was appropriate. That is why we keep finding these unintended consequences that Obama tries to paper over with Executive Orders.

That is why the idea of "fixing" ObamaCare is a very bad idea. There are so many traps in the bill (as well as in the stacks of "rules") that no one could untangle the mess. This is just like a badly designed web site. Best to start all over than try to add undocumented patch upon undocumented patch in a vain attempt to fix it.

If the Republicans get control of the Senate, they should identify what the minimum requirements of a health care system should be, and create a much simpler, easy to understand bill and send that to Obama.

Peter said...

"It's dumb (or disingenuous) to portray Scalia as somehow troubled by needing to apply a statute that requires courts to protect religion more than the Constitution requires."

Well, that is, unless you assume that the primary purpose of jurisprudence is to impose your personal opinions whenever possible. In that case, the only "legal problem" is to find a justification for doing so.

So, depending on your opionion of Scalia, the only thing that might be dumb (or disingenuous) would be to assume he's so lacking in ethics that he'd start with the answer and then invent justifications to support it, independently of the legal issues involved.

Renee said...

Alan Dershorwitz worked on RFRA

I don't know. if it can't fit into an internet meme on Facebook, the argument won't get to the American people.

People share some irresponsible content, nothing they would never actually type themselves as a personal point of view.

garage mahal said...

Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?

MattL said...

The people criticizing Drudge aren't even right about non-self employed people. Most people aren't paying their 2013 taxes right now. They're applying to get their zero interest loans to the governments repaid.

There are several lines on my pay stub that tell me that I'm paying my 2014 taxes right now.

Browndog said...

Under the premise that "liberals always blame conservatives for their failed policies, and insist the only fix is more liberal policies...

...anxiously awaiting the democrat fix to Obamacare. I bet it's going to be even more awesome than simply and endless delay.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

garage mahal said...

Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare.

I'm not big on Repeal and Replace.

I'm more into Repeal and Rejoice.

MattL said...

[garage is]...anxiously awaiting...

In which garage flaunts his ignorance of a multitude of proposals.

Tank said...

garage mahal said...

Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?


Paraphrasing AA, sometimes nothing is better than something. But you stick to your talking points.

RecChief said...

when people talk about an "unproductive" Congress they seem to think that it's a volume business. I would much rather that they took the time to iron out conflicts between bills before they go to the President's desk for signature. That might cut down on the cases that the high Court takes up. And perhaps, it will reduce the sheer number of laws that really shouldn't be enacted in the first place.

Bob Ellison said...

"I've explained this before..."

We are stupid. Explain it again, but this time, use language that normal people understand.

Your post runs all over the place. You seem to think people should be inside your head, understanding and believing in the things you understand and believe.

That's the way most of us live in the normal world.

traditionalguy said...

The real Tea Party was a popular revolt against the King of England.

The Gadsden Flag is a warning that there will be a popular revolt if the King of England sends his Army to kill us.

The ObamaCare PR attempt latches onto the Revolt warning and tells Congress that the dependent Americans will revolt if free benefits are taken away.

You just have to believe the Free Benefits are free.

MattL said...

RecChief, there's a fatal flaw in your plan. Bills in Congress, like some programming languages, are write only. It's just easier to vote Yea and let the President's Secretaries and the courts do all that tiresome reading.

garage mahal said...

Paraphrasing AA, sometimes nothing is better than something. But you stick to your talking points.

So just leave ObamaCare as it is? That's going to be a bit confusing to voters.

paul a'barge said...

Sahil Kapur? Did someone say Sahil Kapur?
http://a5.img.talkingpointsmemo.com/image/upload/c_thumb,fl_keep_iptc,g_faces,h_200,w_200/rbzswuatscnipmb5upus.png

male? female? tranny? You decide.

Jonathan Card said...

This Gadsden flag thing reminds me if Futurama's Problems with Popplers episode:

Leela: [shouting] Stop eating Popplers! They can talk!
[A man dressed as a Poppler and holding a tray of free samples walks up behind her.]
Man #4: [shouting] Don't stop to talk! Eat Popplers!
[Another man takes a Poppler and eats it.]
Leela: Hey, cut it out!
Man #4: [shouting] Take a coupon, cut it out! [Leela hits him with her sign.] Ow! Ow!

It's pretty frustrating. Wish I could hit someone with a sign.

Drago said...

garage: "So just leave ObamaCare as it is?"

You'll have to be more specific since "as it is" does not actually mean anything.

Be quick now.

I know it takes you a bit of time pecking at the keyboard to cut and paste from sites where people are actually conversant on such topics.

Michael K said...

"Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?"

garage was asleep or not yet born when Republicans supported HMOs as a solution, then DRGs as a solution to costs. The history of health care reform is a mystery to garage. All he knows is that his hero, Obama, signed a bill that nobody had read (except the recent Sociology graduate on Reid's staff that wrote that section) and therefore it is "from on high" and should not be messed with by the proletariat which does not know what is good for it.

We know about your brilliant understanding of health care reform. You read TPM and are therefore knowledgeable.

Mark said...

Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?

Can anyone spot the fallacious assumption here?

Mark said...

The plight of the southern farmer is a terrible thing. I propose we require that every citizen buy a minimum amount of tobacco products each year or pay a penalty to the IRS. We'll let Justice Roberts decide whether it's a tax or not, and whether that does or doesn't make it Constitutional.

Mark said...

Don't like that, Garage? What's the Democrats response, drive more Southern Farmers into poverty? What would Shirley Sherrod say to that?

Seeing Red said...

Maybe you should talk to the president about leaving Obamacare as it is. His pen's treading on it.

Jay said...


Blogger garage mahal said...

Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome


Considering ObamaCare is delayed until 2017, what is the need for an "alternative"?

Seeing Red said...

As to your neighbor forcing you to plant rose bushes, Cali's leading the way on that one. The entire state is being Kelo'd.

Seeing Red said...

Once again GM is incurious.

Jay said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
garage mahal said...

Considering ObamaCare is delayed until 2017, what is the need for an "alternative"?

Republicans will run on "ObamaKKKare is the worst thing since slavery.....but, uh, we're not going to offer any solutions so, uh, vote for me?" That sounds about right.

MattL said...

garage, your lies are usually more plausible. It's making for disappointing reading.

It's actually the Democrats (e.g., the sunk Sink) who are campaigning on, "Obamacare needs to be fixed," but then refuse to go into details.

garage mahal said...

So what are the Republicans running on currently?

ObamaCare is bad....and?

MattL said...

So what are the Republicans running on currently?

ObamaCare is bad....and?


It's at least as good as "Bush is bad," which was enough to get large majorities and the White House a few years ago.

No doubt you're hoping they'll come up with something stupid (and they probably will) to compensate for a winning message.

Fen said...

Libtard: Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?

There are 5 of them. All 5 were presented before ObamaCare was pushed through.

Not at all surprised that you are an incurious and ignorant party hack.

Fen said...

Libtard: Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?

There are 5 of them. All 5 were presented before ObamaCare was pushed through.

Not at all surprised that you are an incurious and ignorant party hack.

Jane the Actuary said...

There's another difference between the original peyote case and the ACA that makes this more compelling:

with respect to the peyote use and similar issues, the issue is whether the government may broadly prohibit something which impacts the religious practice of a particular group. So: use of peyote in Native American ceremonies. Communion wine during prohibition. More blandly, issues regarding church construction and zoning. And, in general, these are issues which impede worship, but nothing that dramatically interferes with core religious beliefs, as the Europeans are beginning to do with their prohibition (later rescinded) of circumcision, and various prohibitions of kosher slaughtering.

But the Hobby Lobby case is different. The government is actively seeking to compel an entity to *ACT* against its religious beliefs.

garage mahal said...

There are 5 of them. All 5 were presented before ObamaCare was pushed through

So Republicans are running on a 5-point ObamaCare alternative plan? Does it have a name or a link?

Dumb Plumber said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MattL said...

So Republicans are running on a 5-point ObamaCare alternative plan? Does it have a name or a link?

Don't we have to pass it before we can find out what's in it? Damned liberals and their double standards...

cubanbob said...

So what are the Republicans running on currently?

ObamaCare is bad....and?"

Between nothing-a nuetral and bad nuetral is the better choice.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

So what are the Republicans running on currently?

They should run on this. The Democrats in Congress rammed this piece of shit (Ombamacare) through without reading it. Only Congress can change this law, since the Supreme Court caved and said it was constitutional to make everyone buy a product or pay a tax/fee/fine/whatever.

Therefore......until CONGRESS makes a move the law should be STRICTLY enforced. NO favoritism, NO opting out for Unions and cronies. NO exceptions. NO delays. No more illegal tweaking to prevent the law from being enforced. The LAW is the LAW and make everyone comply. EVERYONE. And within the guidelines set by the law (that no one read).

Once people get the full taste of this crap sandwich that they are being forced to eat, they will welcome repeal.

Stress over and over that not ONE Republican voted for this. If you want to get this fixed or repealed, you can't count on the Democrats. They MADE this crap sandwich. Eat it.

They should also run on the idea that the issue of Health Care and Health Insurance are so very VERY complicated that to just do another, quick ram it through move, like the Democrats did would just create yet another crap sandwich. A Republican one that would be just as tasty as the Democrat's crap sandwich.

We need to take our time and do it right this time.

Seeing Red said...

You are incurious GM. If you really wanted to know, you would have spent a minute or 2 finding out.

Drago said...

Sorry garage. We will need to pass the republican plan to find out what is in it.

We will call it "the change to restore hope!".

We already know that the dems are fully on board, and i mean fully on board, with precisely that kind of a plan.

I will make a deal with you garage: if you can link to even 1 comment ypu made demanding specifics from the dems in the run up to obamacare then we'll provide details on our ideas.

If you can link to 1 demand from you demanding details of the dems, well, when did details become important to you?

I mean precisely when?

Precisely.

tim maguire said...

garage mahal said...
So what are the Republicans running on currently?

ObamaCare is bad....and?


And what? Before Obamacare we had a pretty good system that most people liked, where nearly everyone had good coverage they could afford.

Running against what the Democrats did to the American people should be quite enough. They're certainly not obligated to you to do more.

Jay said...

If the Congress that passed the Affordable Care Act had wanted to exempt it from the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, it could have done so explicitly. It did not. Why should the Court cut back Congress's absurdly broad RFRA to help it out with what it failed to bother to do with the ACA?

For several reasons:

#1 - ObamaCare is no more constitutionally sound than the RFRA.

#2 the government must demonstrate a “compelling governmental interest” and employ the “least restrictive means” of furthering that interest. The is no "compelling" interest in mandating birth control coverage.

#3 Over 100 million Americans have been exempted from this stupid ObamaCare provision because either because they work for non-profit corporations or because their plans were grandfathered when Obamacare became effective

Jay said...

garage mahal said...


Republicans will run on "ObamaKKKare is the worst thing since slavery.....but, uh, we're not going to offer any solutions so, uh, vote for me?"


Yeah, that's totally it!!!

Idiot.

Jay said...

So as we see the troll 2-step requires:

1) Make dumb, easily refuted assertion

2) When dumb, easily refuted assertion is shown to be false, repeat step 1 on tangential topic.

Mike said...

DBQ for the Threadwinner!

Drago said...

garage is not available right now.

He's busy trying to hunt down some innocuous comment he made in the run up to obamacare that he can use to say "see! See! I did demand the dems provide details of their plan prior to passage!! I'm not just a pathetic troll!"

LOL

This should be fun.

Michael K said...

My opinion is that, until Obama is out of office and replaced by a Republican, the ACA (Obamacare) will remind the law except that a GOP Congress will pass legislation to make it voluntary with no mandate. The insurance companies can then write new policies that make economic sense. Obamacare will slowly fade away as though it had never been. Like other foolish laws that are ignored, it will be there but ineffective.

Something will have to be done about risk pools for the uninsurable but they turned out to be a few hundred thousand instead of millions so it will be reasonable to have taxes subsidize them.

The expansion of Medicaid will be allowed to wither as reimbursement will be frozen and access will shrink.

Some day, when commons sense has returned, or after the economic collapse that is coming has occurred, somebody will try free market reform.

tim maguire said...

Jay, a while back Patterico reduced liberal argumentation to a formula that I have found holds pretty true:

Liberal asserts A

Conservative gives reasons and logic refuting A.

Liberal asserts B.

Conservative gives reasons and logic refuting B.

Liberal asserts C.

Conservative gives reasons and logic refuting C.

Liberal asserts A.

Michael K said...

"remain the law" Damn that autocorrect.

Drago said...

BTW, where is the comprehensive bill presented by the dems to fix all known flaws to obamacare?

Can garage link to that?

Drago said...

You can just picture garage scurrying about like a hamster on a wheel trying to find something, anything, at TPM or Media Matters or anywhere he can lob back into the mix.

Sad.

Though predictable.

Drago said...

Michael K: "..commons sense..."

Even this typo makes sense!

Sometimes you simply stumble into something that works.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

garage mahal said...

ObamaCare is bad....and?

Unaffordable
Unamerican
Unconstitutional
Unconscionable
Unctuous
...

garage mahal said...

"We're MAD as hell and....we're going to take it. But still be MAD. So vote for us!"

Since Republicans don't have anything other than heckling from the sidelines I would expect nothing less.

MattL said...

Reading garage's comments makes me think he's entered the Twilight Zone. He's experiencing some other reality, but somehow his comments keep making it back to the real world.

garage mahal said...

But we've moved on from "repeal/replace", to "repeal", to "don't repeal or replace". ObamaCare is fine just the way it is.

Even Scott Walker has softened his stance considerably. He doesn't want to sabotage ObamaCare. He might be looking at polling too. But still.

Brando said...

Garage's comments are telling. At no point does he point out that the ACA is on balance a good law, or that it will have more positive than negative effects. Instead, the argument is "you right wingers have no better alternative!"

Which is sort of like someone borrowing your car, driving it into a tree, and then telling you that you're not such a great driver yourself. This still doesn't make him a good driver.

Jay said...

tim maguire said...

Jay, a while back Patterico reduced liberal argumentation to a formula that I have found holds pretty true:


That is pretty darn good!

Browndog said...

Jay said..


#2 the government must demonstrate a “compelling governmental interest”


heh-that's simple.

Using law professor real world lawyering; find a legal precedent, then use the dicta from the majority to change the (legal) definition of compelling-governmental-interest; or, any text you want-



Presto! A new and improved Constitution.

Renee said...

NARAL is powerful, even if this loses they will come back . There supporters are loyal and donate financially.

Women are not women, unless we have the absolute right to suppress ovulation. Why should she carry the burden?

Seeing Red said...

Obamacare has sabotaged Obamacare. It will start bleeding the states in 3-5 years. IL & CA hardest hit. But they voted for it.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

My plan:

Repeal the ACA.
Rejoice.

Carefully consider the following:

1) Public funding of public health issues.
1.1) Free vaccinations ( Fuck You Jenny McCarthy ).
1.2) Possibly free antibiotics, with controls to prevent overuse. Free might not actually be the best though. I remember a study that found that patients did a better job of taking their entire course of medicine, and taking it on schedule, if they paid their own money for the medicine. This is important with antibiotics.
1.3) Free treatment for certain diseases/conditions. Some to consider: TB, MRSA, Pregnancy+AIDS to prevent transmission to the unborn child.

2) Fix the tax incentives
2.1) Remove all tax breaks for insurance plans beyond catastrophic. If your employer provides you with more, that is taxable income.
2.2) Personal spending on catastrophic insurance and medical care is fully tax deductible.

3) Add a subsidized option for the uninsurable. Make it a form of bankruptcy, where a court will decide how few of your assets you get to keep, with the rest going to pay for your care. That way it is available for people who really need it, but it is not an option that someone would intend to use if they could avoid it.

Browndog said...

Garage still lives under the illusion that Obamacare was designed to improve the "old" healthcare delivery system with a "new" healthcare delivery system.

garage mahal said...

Instead, the argument is "you right wingers have no better alternative!"

I'm wondering where all the anger is coming from if Republicans aren't proposing any concrete plans to change the law with legislation.

jr565 said...

Peter wrote:
So, depending on your opionion of Scalia, the only thing that might be dumb (or disingenuous) would be to assume he's so lacking in ethics that he'd start with the answer and then invent justifications to support it, independently of the legal issues involved.

Kind of how lefty judges decide gay marriage.

jr565 said...

tim maguire wrote:
Jay, a while back Patterico reduced liberal argumentation to a formula that I have found holds pretty true:

Liberal asserts A

Conservative gives reasons and logic refuting A.

Liberal asserts B.

Conservative gives reasons and logic refuting B.

Liberal asserts C.

Conservative gives reasons and logic refuting C.

Liberal asserts A.

It's pretty good. Except it skips the part where the lib accuses the repub of racism/sexism/classim/bigotry for having logical refutations for A, B and C. No formula would be complete without the addition of the race/sex/class card to quiet any opposition

eric said...

It does my heart good to know that Garage thinks he has something with his snark about Obamacare and that the Democrats think they have a winning plan to claim no one is hurt by Obamacare.

Normally such nonsense would work well for the Democrats. Saying something repeatedly and having it paroted by the media tends to work for them. Especially with the low information voter.

In this case though, there are just too many people who have to deal with the horror that is Obamacare. No amount of telling us its all lies will remove the reality from before our faces.

Now, what worries me just a little (But the history of the left and Democrats in this country makes it a distant worry) is that they'll see what a terrible plan this is and change gears and where Democrats are vunerable, they will take Obamacare off the table as an issue by also promising to vote for repeal.

So far though, Garage has given me hope that the Republicans are going to storm Washington this election cycle and take over both houses.

But before that happens, can we please primary the likes of Lindsey Graham and get some better people in there?

Keep the blinders on Garage! It's going to work out great for your party. Next year you all should force another vote on Walker too. Good times.

Drago said...

LOL

Looks like garage is back and attempting to deflect from the obvious fact that he never, ever, not once, required any specifics from the dems regarding obamacare before it was passed.

Well, what a surprise.

Even now garage isn't too keen on the specifics of what the actual legislation is doing.

In fact, he isn't very concerned at all with all the obama maneuvers regarding obamacare.

In double fact, garage doesn't have any specifics about the dem comprehensive plan to fix all the known screwups of the obamacare legislation.

But, oddly, garage is very very very very very interested in precisely, specifically, in detail, the republicans are offering.

LOL

garage, the voice actuated wind-up troll.

And yet, Althouse would not be same without him.

Probably better, but certainly not the same.

garage mahal said...

So far though, Garage has given me hope that the Republicans are going to storm Washington this election cycle and take over both houses.

So if I hate ObamaCare why should I vote Republican?

Mike said...

I'm wondering where all the anger is coming from if Republicans aren't proposing any concrete plans to change the law with legislation.

Let's diagram that, shall we?

I'm wondering where all the anger is coming from

Me too! What the hell are you talking about here? People are laughing at you, not threatening you.

if Republicans aren't proposing any concrete plans

Of course many others have pointed out MANY plans Republicans have proposed. If that isn't concrete enough how about the three changes to the law that were voted on by both houses and signed by Obama? Is THAT concrete enough for you?

to change the law with legislation

Well we did propose to delay the mandates (at various times) for a year, each of which drew Liberal fire because THE LAW IS THE LAW you know. But then Obama by fiat just delayed the law himself, so I guess he's really a racist at heart too.

And since Garage won't even attempt to understand this post or respond, let's just acknowledge the 400-million-pound elephant in the room. Obama has demonstrated the way to "fix" the law: the next president just delays implementation indefinitely and the law dies of it's own inertia. So no one need respond to Garage's infantile "so what are you gonna do" bullshit because we're going to do what the current occupant did. And there ain't a thing Dems can do to stop it because...precedent.

ACA will go down in history like the Edsel and new Coke, except far less successful and, unfortunately it was public funded. So I guess ACA is more like the Tacoma Narrows Bridge than a product.

Drago said...

eric: "It does my heart good to know that Garage thinks he has something with his snark about Obamacare and that the Democrats think they have a winning plan to claim no one is hurt by Obamacared"

You may or may not recall that garage, being the automated troll that he is, along with Inga, has consistently parroted whatever his political "betters" have directed him to say.

It's useful in mapping the trajectory of the dem talking points over course of the last several years.

It's also useful to remember that at every single stage of this obamacare debacle, garage and other minions have told us that any hardships that were to come with passage, hardships that have been realized, and even more hardships to come as the law fully rolls out were all "lies".

Lies, lies lies!!

So now this latest "reset" (don't you love that term? Obama's boyfriend in Moscow certainly does) is claiming that there are no cases of anyone being harmed by obamacare.

Up next: an explanation by the lefties for why gravity doesn't exist. We simply "choose" to remain terrestrial!

Michael K said...

"2) Fix the tax incentives
2.1) Remove all tax breaks for insurance plans beyond catastrophic. If your employer provides you with more, that is taxable income.
2.2) Personal spending on catastrophic insurance and medical care is fully tax deductible."

Both excellent suggestions. I would add the provision that doctors and hospitals can charge more than insurance/Medicare pays if they disclose the fact before treatment. That would allow economic reality for costs and the market would push the providers to keep charges reasonable for those who cannot afford more but allow others to choose more expensive ones.

One huge driver of medical inflation is the rule that the insurance/Medicare/Medicaid payment is the total payment. France, of all places, allows "balance billing" and free choice.

France also has free medical school.

garage mahal said...

So, no alternative whatsoever. Just chirping from the sidelines. Hate to jump onto the field where you can get hit. That might hurt!

Drago said...

I'm sorry. I must have missed it.

Garage could you repost your links to your demands for specifics from the dems in the run up to obamacare passage as well as your links to the dem comprehensive plan to fix the known flaws in obamacare?

Thanks.

LOL

garage mahal said...

Garage could you repost your links to your demands for specifics from the dems in the run up to obamacare passage as well as your links to the dem comprehensive plan to fix the known flaws in obamacare?

So you want me to google comments I made 4 years ago? LOL. Maybe Repubs can run on that?

"We're mad, have no plans or ideas, and we want to see what Democrats were talking about 4 years ago".

Mike said...

As predicted, Garage ignored my post because it's not convenient to his artifice, constructed as it is of snot and tissue paper.

LOL. You really are a troll after all.

tim maguire said...

garage mahal said...
So, no alternative whatsoever. Just chirping from the sidelines.

Garage has developed an abbreviated version of Patterico's formula. He just keeps asserting A.

MattL said...

No amount of details (past or present) would convince garage that anyone has any ideas about what we could do any more than anyone could convince Crack that a white guy isn't racist.

Maybe garage could tell us why those bumper stickers aren't racist, since the biggest Obamacare treader is the eponymous dear leader. As mentioned upthread: IT'S THE LAW.

Drago said...

garage: "So you want me to google comments I made 4 years ago?"

You made no demands for specifics from dems in the run up to obamacare.

None.

Zilch.

Nada.

Even now you demand no specifics from the obama admin on what they are doing, how they are doing nor what they will be doing.

But that's ok.

Your programmers will no doubt offer up a cookie to you for your efforts.

I'm beginning to understand why college was really, really, a bridge too far for you.

Oops.

"bridge too far".

That's a war movie reference.

Sorry. You know nothing about that either.

Thanks again for your courageous service in the fight for more "free stuff".

jr565 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike said...

D
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or else

Mike said...

Well that didn't work.

Drago said...

I
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Drago said...

Poor garage.

He's gone back one more time to look for a comment he can reference to show us all he has been super duper consistent on this "specifics" thing all along!!

Why bother.

It's not there.

Maybe he really doesn't remember.

He can't even offer up a link to what the dem comprehensive plan to fix the known obamacare flaws NOW.

Strange, since every single dem is running on "fixing" obamacare, yet there isn't a dem bill to do that.

Hmmmmm.

What are the specifics of those "fixes"?

Help us out here garage.

What are the dems specifically recommending?

Let me guess.

We'll have to pass the dem obamacare fix to see what is in it.

Right?

garage mahal said...

Better slow down, DragoBot.

Your circuitry.

Is getting.

A little.

Overloaded.

Attention.

Must.

Be.

Paid.

Drago said...

garage: "Attention.

Must.

Be.

Paid"

LOL

garage just plucks somefellers comments from a previous thread.

Gee garage, you really have never had an original thought have you?

LOL

BTW garage, where are your links to the dem plan to fix obamacare?

There should be one since every dem is running on it.

Come on, we want specifics!!

Attention must be paid to the specifics of the dem "fixit" plan.

Now, where is that thing?...

Iapetus said...

Kapur was likely correct when he claimed the ACA penalty was not due until 2015 and Drudge was likely wrong when he cited the instructions for Form 1040es as claiming that taxpayers who file quarterly should include a pre-payment of the ACA penalty. The F1040es instructions advise taxpayers "to consider" whether to pre-pay the penalty when figuring their estimated quarterly taxes for 2014 but do not expressly state they must do so. Elsewhere, on its Web site, the IRS uses equally vague language regarding the same question. Of course, there is no harm if Drudge overpays his estimated taxes. On balance, however, it appears that quarterly filers are not obliged to pay the ACA penalty until 2015, nor will they be assessed a late penalty by the IRS if they fail to pre-pay their ACA "shared responsibility payment" with their estimated taxes throughout 2014.

MayBee said...

If you hate Obamacare, vote for Republicans to get your message to those who created and support Obamacare.

Why risk giving the message you are pleased with the Democrats' creation?

Jason said...

35 jobz!!!!! Lulz.

Drago said...

Iapetus: "On balance, however, it appears that quarterly filers are not obliged to pay the ACA penalty until 2015, nor will they be assessed a late penalty by the IRS if they fail to pre-pay their ACA "shared responsibility payment" with their estimated taxes throughout 2014."

LOL

Anyone want to take bets as to whether or not the IRS would "rule" that someone like Drudge is in violation of early payment "obligations"?

Being an independent myself, I know a few folks who fall into this category (like Drudge) and their accountants all say the same thing: you can't trust the IRS to rule tomorrow they way the claim they claim they will rule today.

Too risky.

They are all paying the penalty/tax/fee/unicorn "love" offering quarterly.



Unknown said...

I'm going out on a limb here to defend Garage. It's pretty obvious his computer isn't receiving most of the material on this thread and he's only capable of sending out snarky posts.

Drago said...

Unknown said...
I'm going out on a limb here to defend Garage. It's pretty obvious his computer isn't receiving most of the material on this thread and he's only capable of sending out snarky posts

Well, as the Crack Emcee would most definitely say: That's mighty white of you.

Sorry.

It was just sitting there.

It was like a grapefruit sized pitch.

I had to swing.

Bob Ellison said...

This is a real problem. garage mahal is a friendly punching bag around here, and many commenters punch away. But:

1) garage mahal doesn't take offense; he just comes back with snark, so maybe he's just posing. He plays the game as though he doesn't care who wins the point. He only cares about the game. Maybe he's just a right-wing moby, or maybe he's just a ne'er-do-well. But he does not engage in argument. So don't try.

2) If (1) is incorrect-- if garage mahal thinks himself sincere-- then what's going on with political discussion around here? I think it's likely that he thinks himself sincere and clever, and that's more frightening. There's all this talk about Alinsky on the rightosphere, and I'm starting to believe it. Is it OK if people just blow about with snark and dumb points, not caring whether or not they get their ideas across?

Nate Whilk said...

garage mahal said...

"Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?"

Anxiously awaiting the Democrats to take responsibility for the pile of garbage that is called Obamacare and stop trying to shift responsibility to others for once in their existence. Oh, wait. That's never happened and never will.

To Obama and all Democrats: This was YOUR idea. YOU rammed it through Congress. YOU f'ed up BIG TIME. This is YOUR mess. It's YOUR responsibility. YOU fix it.

Drago said... "Sorry garage. We will need to pass the republican plan to find out what is in it."

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAA! Perfect!

Elise Ronan said...

i.e. Congressional statutes and Hobby Lobby.... to paraphrase Roberts, "it is not the job of the Supreme Court to save the people from themselves.

eric said...

"2) If (1) is incorrect-- if garage mahal thinks himself sincere-- then what's going on with political discussion around here? I think it's likely that he thinks himself sincere and clever, and that's more frightening. There's all this talk about Alinsky on the rightosphere, and I'm starting to believe it. Is it OK if people just blow about with snark and dumb points, not caring whether or not they get their ideas across?"

This is what most of the debate is degraded to anyway. It's an emotional response, not a reasonable or logical one.

And that's the Democrats bread and butter. Emotion. It's why someone like Althouse can be convinced to vote for Obama at least once. It's why they win the female vote.

It works most of the time. Unfortunately for them (Fortunate for the rest of us) it's not going to work this time, because Obamacare has hurt too many people.

However, it will continue to work in future elections. It plays to the uneducated, low information voter.

RecChief said...

Garage Mahal said...
"Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?"

I don't need to know how to build a better car to know I don't want a '74 Pinto

garage mahal said...

1) garage mahal doesn't take offense; he just comes back with snark, so maybe he's just posing. He plays the game as though he doesn't care who wins the point.

Why would I take a debate personally arguing with anonymous posters like Drago and the rest?

Drago said...

garage: "Why would I take a debate personally arguing with anonymous posters like Drago and the rest?"

Says the anonymous poster.

LOL

Still waiting for those links to the specific dem bills designed to correct obamacare's flaws which all the dems are running on.

Or did you suddenly become less interested in specifics again in the last few hours?

LOL

PerryCuomo said...

When the case of Hobby Lobby could be under discussion here, instead this blog thread is wasted on back and forth crap. Why doesn't the blog owner enforce her own rules? This place has become nothing more than a mud wrestling area. Nothing substantive has any chance of surfacing under all this mud. It's boring as hell, what a joke this place has become.

Drago said...

Perry: "When the case of Hobby Lobby could be under discussion here, instead this blog thread is wasted on back and forth crap."

Well Perry, what specifically is left to discuss?

The law points clearly to Hobby Lobby winning their case.

The left doesn't give a crap about the law and they want the ruling to go against Hobby Lobby anyway and the left in the media is more than happy to mischaracterize the argument up one side and down the other all the while casting aspersions on those darn Catholics on the court.

Given that, what is left to say?

Browndog said...

Interesting...

garage mahal said...

So if I hate ObamaCare why should I vote Republican?


I haven't seen a response to a perfectly legitimate, simple question.

My response would be that no man should tell another how to vote; but note that no republican voted for Obamacare.

Kirk Parker said...

Renee,

"Women are not women, unless we have the absolute right to suppress ovulation; and kill those few who evade our best efforts"

FIFY.

Kirk Parker said...

Ignorance,

"Carefully consider the following:"

I did, and with one glaring exception those are excellent! A very good start. You should carefully consider upgrading your handle here.

Oh, the exception? Not gonna f*ck Jenny M.

Iapetus said...

@Drago 1:55pm;"I know a few folks who fall into this category (like Drudge) and their accountants all say the same thing: you can't trust the IRS to rule tomorrow they way the claim they claim they will rule today"

The point is the IRS has not issued a ruling, which is why they are hedging by the use of such vague language. In view of the many arbitrary changes the White House has made to the ACA law, it should be obvious the IRS is waiting for instructions from the White House that the IRS can implement without falling afoul of the president's political objectives for the upcoming mid-term election. And since the White House has pretty much made it clear publicly that any ACA penalty will not be due until tax returns are filed in April 2015, that's almost certainty how things will turn out.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

PerryCuomo said...

This place has become nothing more than a mud wrestling area.


New around here, aincha?

There's a tipping point in most threads, and not just on this blog, where the discussion ends and the flaming begins. If you really want to contribute to a serious discussion, you'd better get it in by the first twenty comments. It used to be that once J made his first comment the thread was pretty much over. It grieves me to note that garage mahal has lately taken his place. I can remember a time when garage would make an effort at debating, but now it's all drive-by snark and no substance. Sad, in a way.

Birkel said...

“Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.”
― Napoleon

garage mahal is incapable of understanding Napoleon's famous quote. The incapacity is caused by political cheerleading. He has chosen a team and any call that goes against his team is wrong. Even reality.

Right now the Republican plan is to let Democrats continue with their mistakes. And Democrats are trying their collective best to change the subject from the single most intrusive piece of legislation in American history that caused and will cause immediate harm (to finances and to freedom) to a broad cross-section of the citizenry.

The dumb asses you support committed a mistake. Republicans would do well not to interrupt them.

cubanbob said...

"garage mahal said...

So if I hate ObamaCare why should I vote Republican?"

From what I gather Garage is a public sector employee and a strong public sector union advocate. Assuming that is true from his perspective he's not being snarky. The Republicans indeed aren't offering him MORE. So unless the Republicans out democrat the Democrats there really isn't a reason for him to vote Democrat.

cubanbob said...

Correction: Republican.

CWJ said...

Iapetus wrote @ 5:35 -

"The point is the IRS has not issued a ruling, which is why they are hedging by the use of such vague language."

Yeah when even the IRS is hedging, that's surely the time for the private citizen to interpret the situation in their favor. Try again.

You spoke of Drudge "lying", not merely being prudent, because the IRS only told the private citizen to "consider" paying the penalty. That's like you saying the business owner is "lying" about paying the protection money because the mobster merely expressed concern that it would be a shame if something were to happen to his business.

Douglas said...

Garage,
You should check out John Goodman's plan to replace Obamacare in NRO a few weeks back. Even John Cochrane thought it was splendid. Has the GOP rallied around it? No, but so what?

MattL said...

And since the White House has pretty much made it clear publicly that any ACA penalty will not be due until tax returns are filed in April 2015, that's almost certainty how things will turn out.

Exactly! Like how they made it clear publicly, in October, how Obamacare would not be delayed.

The only thing we know about the future of Obamacare is that we don't know what will happen until that phone and that pen do their magic.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

So, now Obamacare supercedes the rights of individuals. His kind actually believe this nonsense. If they can't get you with planned parenthood, then they will impose punitive measures to penalize survivors.

I guess economic development is too difficult, and respecting individual dignity and human life is only when it can be exploited for leverage, especially democratic.

Just do what feels good, I guess. Perhaps another party will actually address the causes of progressive inflation and finally reject the left-wing principle that describes human life as a commodity, interchangeable and disposable, throughout its evolution from conception to death.

Birkel said...

Meanwhile, the deadline for signing up for Obama-Insurance has been extended.
All one must do is pinky swear they tried before but failed to complete the process.

There is no E-Verify for pinky swears.

Meade said...

garage mahal said...
Anxiously awaiting the alternative Republican plan to ObamaCare. I bet it's awesome. Coming out soon I hear?

Rick Caird said...
If the Republicans get control of the Senate, they should identify what the minimum requirements of a health care system should be, and create a much simpler, easy to understand bill and send that to Obama.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
EMD said...

Now that is what I call Concern Trolling, Mr. Cuomo!

n.n said...

The solution would have a decidedly local character, with a bottom-up perspective. It would focus on identifying and mitigating progressive inflation, which ensures that medical insurance, let alone health care, remains unaffordable after the so-called "reform". It would be supplemented with a top-down perspective in order to address society or national level issues, including abortion, immigration (especially illegal), unbalanced trade, etc. It would attempt, as a matter of policy, to mitigate corruption caused by dissociation of risk.

So, any "universal" solution would resemble Medicare (i.e. backed by productive enterprise). It may include a Medicaid option, but that would be limited, and its introduction would be evidence of unresolved or unaddressed issues.

Drago said...

Iapetus: "And since the White House has pretty much made it clear publicly that any ACA penalty will not be due until tax returns are filed in April 2015, that's almost certainty how things will turn out."

LOL

"..almost certainty..."

Not. Good. Enough.

Prepay it now.

Especially if you are a high profile non-Dem.

Any other choice makes ZERO sense in the age of obama.

Quit being so obtuse Iapetus.

There is a new political reality in DC. Stop pretending it can be ignored.

Anthony said...

I also like Dr. Weevil:
Unlike the Gadsden flag snake, this one doesn't seem to be a rattlesnake. The point of the original flag is that the snake-warrior doesn't strike first, doesn't go in search of people to bite, but if you step on him, he will bite back and hurt you worse than you hurt him. The Obamacare snake just bites people.


That last word needs to be removed. The Obamacare snake just bites.

Meade said...

"And why would they want to portray that stethoscope as being like a rattlesnake?"

Coiled like a rattlesnake ready to strike. Or like a dirty stethoscope ready to infect. Or like an IUD ready to scrape/abort. Or like a bad faith Stupak Amendment - executive order deal ready to unwind.

Like a Death Spiral. Going down.